DBusiness Daily Update: Benzinga in Detroit to Host Sports Business Titans! Event with NFL Draft as Backdrop on April 25, and More

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies.
University of Michigan running back Donovan Edwards
University of Michigan running back Donovan Edwards is one of the athletes scheduled to appear at Benzinga’s Sports Business Titans! NFL Draft event on April 25. // Image courtesy of Benzinga

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

Benzinga in Detroit to Host Sports Business Titans! with NFL Draft as Backdrop on April 25

Detroit-based financial news and conference company Benzinga is hosting what it calls “an unprecedented convergence of sports, business prowess, and philanthropy” from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on April 25 at One Campus Martius in downtown Detroit.

Sports Business Titans! will be a live production set against the backdrop of the main NFL Draft activities and showcase more than 20 athletes who will share their insights in the world of investing and business while supporting Life Directions, a nonprofit youth empowerment program in Detroit.

Special guests include University of Michigan running back Donovan Edwards, former Detroit Lions Gosder Cherilus and Rob Sims, current Lions punter Jack Fox, LaMarr Woodley, Tracy Walker, James Hudson, and more. The athletes will share their proven investment strategies, operational efficiencies, and success stories. They will be joined by sports insiders as well as rising stars ready to make their mark.

To register to attend Benzinga’s NFL Draft event, visit here.

Farbman Group to Host Book Signing with Entrepreneur Nino Cutraro and Author R.J. King

 Farbman Group in Southfield will host a book signing and fireside chat with entrepreneur Nino Cutraro and author R.J. King from 4-6 p.m. at New Center One (3031 W. Grand Blvd. in Suite 203) in Detroit on Wednesday, May 15.

King will discuss and sign copies of his latest book, “Taboo,” which chronicles how Cutraro created iconic nightclubs like Taboo and La Notte, along with successful restaurants across metro Detroit. Today, Cutraro owns two restaurants in downtown Birmingham, Bella Piatti and Mare Mediterranean (the latter with Jay Feldman).

“We are honored to host R.J. and Nino to help share Nino’s incredible collection of stories and experiences,” says Andy Farbman, CEO of Farbman Group. “Nino’s journey as an entrepreneur is nothing short of inspiring. R.J.’s work in ‘Taboo’ paints his legacy right alongside the colorful history of nightlife in Detroit.”

Signed copies of “Taboo” will be available for purchase and the first 25 registrants will receive an autographed book for free. One hundred percent of the proceeds from book sales will benefit Variety Children’s Charity of Detroit and the Grammichele Municipal Library in Sicily.

In “Taboo,” King takes readers on a journey through Cutraro’s life, from his humble beginnings in Italy to becoming the mastermind behind some of the most celebrated nightclubs and restaurants in America, including Taboo, Metropolitan Music Café, La Notte, Intermezzo, Mare Mediterranean, and Bella Piatti.

Over the years, Cutraro and his establishments hosted high-profile events and people, including the historic moment at Taboo when James Brown, “The Godfather of Soul,” and Aretha Franklin, “The Queen of Soul,” shared the stage for the first time. Over memorable events include an impromptu performance by Stevie Wonder and Prince at Intermezzo, and Madonna’s 28th birthday party (complete with her husband at the time, Sean Penn) at Taboo, Detroit Red Wings championship celebrations at Intermezzo and the former Sangria in downtown Royal Oak.

King is the editor of DBusiness magazine, DBusiness Daily News, Hustle and Muscle, and Detroit 500. He has authored six books, including “Detroit: Engine of America” and “The First Mobile App.” To register for the event, email eisho@farbman.com. For more information visit detroittaboo.com.

Detroit Historical Museum Exhibit to Highlight Kresge Foundation Impact

The Detroit Historical Society has partnered with The Kresge Foundation to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the foundation in 2024 with a slate of exhibitions and programming that will launch May 4.

The Kresge Foundation was established in 1924 by Sebastian Spering Kresge, whose retail empire, the S.S. Kresge Co., brought low-priced goods to the public through five and dime stories, and later, Kmart. Today the private philanthropic foundation works to expand equity and opportunity in America’s cities through grantmaking and social investing. After 100 years, more than $5.1 billion has flowed to support nonprofits across the U.S and around the world.

A new exhibition, “Kresge at 100: A Century of Impact, a Future of Opportunity,” will be a centerpiece of the centennial commemoration.  Components include:

  • Exhibition: Kresge at 100: A Century of Impact, a Future of Opportunity.
  • Kresge Second Sundays free admission.
  • May 23: Book talk to celebrate the publication of “Embracing a City: The Kresge Foundation in Detroit 1993-2023” (Momentum Books) moderated by John Gallagher.
  • June 19: Juneteenth: The Role of Lunch Counters in the Civil Rights Movement Lecture moderated by local historian Ken Coleman.
  • Moving Forward Award presentation May 11 during the 2024 Society Ball, Saluting the Legends.

Michigan Leads U.S. in New Clean Energy Projects Announced Since August 2022

Businesses announced two major new clean energy and clean vehicle projects in Michigan last month, bringing the total number of large-scale projects announced in Michigan since the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) was signed into law to 29, according to the monthly tally of private-sector announcements from E2.

The new projects, which are expected to create at least 200 new jobs and invest over $40 million, make Michigan home to the most large-scale clean energy projects announced since the IRA.

“Following another strong jobs report last week, the clean energy economy is once again showing no signs of slowing down. Federal clean energy investments in the IRA are working; they are spurring private investment, thousands of jobs in America’s resurgent manufacturing sector, and they will spark thousands more in those communities to support the new workers and clean energy supply chains being built across the U.S.,” says Micaela Preskill, advocate for E2 Midwest States

Among the projects announced in March was a $43 million investment from LT Precision Co. Ltd to build its North American headquarters in Holland in west Michigan and hire at least 70 new workers.

In all, companies have announced more than 12,000 new jobs and over $11.6 billion in capital investments in connection with projects announced in Michigan. Nationally, 301 projects, 103,900 new jobs, and $120.9 billion in new investments have been announced in 41 states and Puerto Rico. These figures reflect ongoing revisions to previous months’ announcement totals.

Among the highlights:

  • Michigan led all states with two announcements in March.
  • Michigan is No. 1 nationally in clean energy projects announced since IRA with 29.
  • Michigan is No. 3 nationally for most jobs announced by new clean energy projects with 12,170.
  • Michigan is No. 4 nationally for most total investment dollars announced for new clean energy projects with $11.6 billion.

Dentist: Surgery Almost Never Advisable for TMJ

Dr. Jeffrey S. Haddad, founder of the Michigan Center for TMJ and Sleep Wellness and owner and practicing dentist at Rochester Advanced Dentistry, says there is a lot of misinformation circulating about the treatment of TMJ, a group of conditions that cause pain and dysfunction in the jaw joint and the muscles that control jaw movement.

A recent television report featured interviews with patients who had undergone various surgeries for TMJ, with surgical approaches that ranged from dangerous to barbaric, according to Haddad.

“Surgery is almost never advisable for TMJ treatment, much less the invasive surgeries that were portrayed in that news story with trusting patients,” Haddad says. “The message that surgery is the only option and that TMJ treatment is unpredictable and unsuccessful is completely false. Non-surgical treatment options such as oral appliances, muscle relaxation techniques, and physical therapy are all proven approaches in alleviating TMJ symptoms and the pain they cause.”

Haddad, a dentist since 2001, has provided TMJ treatment to more than 2,000 patients, who come not only from Michigan but as far away as California and England to seek out his expertise in treating TMJ and sleep disorders. In only a few cases has he seen patients require surgery, but their issues were compounded by other non-TMJ related conditions.  He provides the facts and myths of TMJ to help serve as a consumer guide”

FACT: Successful TMJ treatment options rarely include surgery. Patients told they need surgery for TMJ conditions should seek a second or third opinion from a dentist who practices neuromuscular dentistry, which provides the foundation for comprehensive TMJ treatment and focuses not only on teeth but jaw positioning, jaw muscles and even posture. It does not include cutting into the jawbone as a treatment option.

FACT: While neuromuscular dentistry has been around for more than 50 years, it’s still not part of the curriculum of some dental schools, requiring dentists to obtain ongoing additional training through continuing medical education on their own.

FACT: 90 percent of all TMJ symptoms are muscular in origin.

MYTH: TMJ conditions mainly impact women. While there is some debate as to whether testosterone blocks some TMJ pain in men, while estrogen exacerbates it in women, Haddad says there are no formal studies confirming that TMJ tends to be a female condition, nor has he seen an overwhelming number of women versus men in his practice – although he admits men may wait longer to receive treatment.

MYTH: A dentist (or physician) can diagnose TMJ by X-rays and a patient’s explanation of symptoms. Dentists who regularly treat TMJ patients have specialized equipment, such as computer diagnostics, to evaluate a patient’s condition and determine if the issue is TMJ-related. Haddad uses computerized jaw tracking equipment and FDA approved dental TENS technology to determine a patient’s optimal bite.

MYTH: TMJ can be self-managed through over the counter pain medication. This is only appropriate for mild cases where symptoms are not severe or consistent.

MYTH: You have to learn to live with the pain from TMJ.

“Some patients find almost immediate relief with accepted TMJ treatment plans, while others take longer to find sustained relief,” Haddad says. “Pain medication is a temporary fix, not an answer; nor is the flippant advice of some medical professionals to eat soft foods for the rest of your life. It’s important for patients to know that TMJ is treatable when treatment is offered from an experienced dental provider with a committed TMJ practice.”

Among the first dentists in Michigan to offer a comprehensive approach to treat the myriad symptoms of TMJ, Haddad is the only dentist in the state to utilize computerized jaw tracking, muscle relaxation techniques, and laser therapy to treat TMJ disorders.

Chaldean Community Foundation to Host Multi-industry Career Fair May 1

The Chaldean Community Foundation is hosting its annual multi-employer, multi-industry Career Fair with dozens of organizations seeking to fill hundreds of full- and part-time positions from 3-5 p.m. on May 1, art its headquarters (3601 15 Mile Road) in Sterling Heights.


Jobs include entry-level and more experienced positions across industries including education, banking, retail, hospitality, manufacturing, cosmetology, and law enforcement. Attendees should bring their resume and dress to impress. They can apply and participate in on-the-spot interviews, and network with other businesses and organizations at this free event that is open to the general public.

Participating organizations currently include: Alline Salon Group, Corewell Health, First Merchants Bank, Henry Ford Health, Intrastate Distributors/Towne Club Bottling, Macomb County Sheriff’s Office, Macomb Intermediate School District, Oakland County, Oakland University, Oakland Community College, Penske, Prime Concepts Detroit, SMART, Sterling Heights Police Department, Utica Community Schools, Warren Consolidated Schools, and the West Bloomfield Police Department.

Interested employers can register to participate with a $150 fee.

For more information, visit chaldeanfoundation.org.

MedCore Acquires Two Senior Living Communities in Detroit Suburbs

Dallas-based MedCore Partners, in partnership with REDICO/American House, has completed the acquisition of senior living communities located in Troy and Rochester Hills.  The two  communities will be operated by American House under the brands American House Somerset and American House Hampton Village, respectively.

“MedCore is excited to partner with American House and to expand its existing senior living portfolio to now include Michigan,” says Brian Bollich, one of MedCore’s four founding partners. “This purchase highlights our investment program of purchasing value-add opportunities with significant location upside, strong cash flow, and operational improvements.”  The acquisition team hopes to leverage each asset’s central location to healthcare options, as well as recreational and lifestyle amenities to position them for steady value enhancement.

Metro Detroit Oral Surgeon in Opens New Office in Troy

Dr. Robert John, a board-certified oral maxillofacial surgeon, has opened Troy Oral Surgery, a full-service, state-of-the-art surgical office located at 1500 W. Big Beaver Road, Suite 110, in Troy.

With more than 22 years of experience, John provides the following services:

  • Dental extractions, including wisdom teeth
  • Dental implants
  • Extensive anesthesia training and experience
  • Facial trauma reconstruction
  • Oral Pathology, including biopsies
  • Bone grafting
  • Pre-prosthetic surgery

For more information or to schedule a consultation, visit TroyOralSurgery.com or call 248-665-8769.

Two Men and a Truck Detroit Seeks 50 New Employees

Two Men and a Truck is looking to hire 50 new team members in the Detroit area and provide them with future opportunities for a career path toward management or business ownership as part of its annual Career Move Season campaign.

The company’s Career Move Season is an annual campaign to recruit new team members and enable franchises to meet the growing needs of their customers. This year, the company is looking to hire at least 5,000 new employees systemwide.

“Through Career Move Season, Two Men and a Truck promotes opportunities to potential hires and encourages them to join a company focused as heavily on the satisfaction of its customers as it is on its team members’ success,” says Sara Bennett, chief talent officer at the company. “We don’t just offer employees a job, we pride ourselves on providing a supportive environment for our employees. One where everyone can experience camaraderie, help people move forward in their own lives, and grow their careers.”

Those interested can visit here.

Lawrence Tech Establishes National Academy of Inventors Chapter

Lawrence Technological University in Southfield is in the process of establishing a new chapter of the National Academy of Inventors.

NAI is a nonprofit membership organization based in Tampa, Fla., formed in 2010 at the University of South Florida to encourage inventors in academia. It has more than 4,600 individual members, including NAI fellows, senior members, and chapter members, affiliated with more than 300 institutions — U.S. and international universities, governmental agencies, and nonprofit research institutes — worldwide.

Fellows must be named as an inventor on at least one United States patent and are selected by the NAI Fellows Committee.

The LTU NAI chapter was spearheaded by longtime LTU engineering technology professor Ken Cook, holder of some 25 U.S. patents. Cook, whose teaching career at LTU spanned seven decades, passed away March 21 at the age of 82.

The members admitted to LTU’s chapter will be comprised of the university’s most prolific inventors, encompassing alumni, faculty, students, and friends.

An informational meeting for all those who would be interested in participating in an LTU NAI chapter will be conducted as part of the university’s annual Research Day on April 19. The meeting will take place from 2-3 p.m. in Room M336 of the LTU Buell Building, Building 5.

Oncourse Home Solutions Purchases Consumers Energy’s Appliance Service Plan Business

Consumers Energy in Jackson has sold its Consumers Energy Appliance Service Plan (ASP) business to Oncourse Home Solutions (OHS) subsidiary American Water Resources. Terms of the deal were not discliosed.

“We are thrilled to finalize the sale of the Appliance Service Plan business, which allows the business to thrive under Oncourse Home Solutions, a company with a proven track record of success in the industry, while also allowing us to focus on our core utility priorities of modernizing our electric and gas grids and our clean energy transformation,” says Brian Rich, senior vice president of customer experience and technology at Consumers Energy.

“We thank the nearly 50 co-workers on the ASP team who have served our Consumers Energy customers so well during their tenure and wish them the very best. As we look ahead, our continued long-term partnership with Oncourse will allow for customers to enjoy more offerings, services and greater appliance protection – a true win, win for all.”

Molina Healthcare in California Wins Michigan Medicaid Contract

California-based Molina Healthcare Inc. announced the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) intends to award a Comprehensive Health Care Program contract to Molina’s health plan subsidiary, Molina Healthcare of Michigan. Molina confirmed it was awarded the contract in six service regions.

The go-live date for Molina Healthcare of Michigan’s new Medicaid contract is expected to be Oct. 1. The next contract is expected to have a duration of five years, with three, one-year optional extensions. Molina Healthcare of Michigan will be one of nine health plans offering health care coverage to Michigan’s nearly 2 million total Medicaid beneficiaries.

Detroit Riverfront Conservancy to Host Annual Dequindre Cut Cleanup April 20

The Detroit Riverfront Conservancy’s annual cleanup of the Dequindre Cut Greenway and its adjacent roadway will take place from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on April 20.

The Dequindre Cut is in need of a spring cleaning ahead of the busy warm season. Because a significant portion of the 1.65-mile greenway is located below street level, it tends to collect trash and debris during the winter months.

Last year, nearly 150 volunteers participating in the cleanup collected an estimated 1,450 pounds of trash. The conservancy will provide trash bags and a select number of trash pickers. Participants are encouraged to bring their own gloves and dress for the weather.

Everyone is welcome to participate, but volunteers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Participants can register here or onsite the day of the event. Volunteer check-in is located at the Woodbridge, Lafayette, Gratiot, and Wilkins Street entrances to the cut.

Free parking is available along Lafayette, Orleans, and Woodbridge streets. Free parking also is available in the Cullen Plaza parking lot (1340 Atwater St.) and at the Robert C. Valade lot at Atwater and Chene.

Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores Wins 2024 Pure Award for Sustainability Efforts

Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores, the historic residence of Eleanor and Edsel Ford, has received the 2024 Pure Award, recognizing its commitment to sustainability initiatives.

Bestowed by Michigan Cares for Tourism, the Pure Award celebrates organizations in Michigan that exhibit exemplary natural, cultural, and heritage stewardship practices as part of their daily operations.

The recognition underscores Ford House’s dedication to environmental stewardship and contributions to creating a more sustainable future. This accolade follows Ford House’s receipt of a $7 million Transformational Habitat Restoration and Coastal Resilience Grant in 2023 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act.

Ford House also announced the appointment of its first sustainability coordinator, Alexis Armstrong, a Michigan State University graduate with a BS in Environmental Science and Management and minors in Environmental Economics and Sustainable Studies.

“Ford House is honored for this recognition, and it truly is a testament to our ongoing dedication to environmental stewardship and our commitment to making a positive impact on the world around us,” says Mark J. Heppner, president and CEO of Ford House.

For further information about the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House and its sustainability efforts, visit here.

Ann Arbor SPARK to Host Annual Meeting & Economic Forum April 30 at EMU

Ann Arbor SPARK is conducting its Annual Meeting and Economic Forum from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. on April 30 at the Eastern Michigan University Student Center (900 Oakwood St.) in Ypsilanti.

This event celebrates 20 years of Ann Arbor SPARK’s contributions to the economic development and innovation landscape in the region.

A highlight of this year’s program is a panel discussion featuring past SPARK board chairs Steven Forrest, professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of Michigan; Tim Marshall, president and CEO of Bank of Ann Arbor; Rick Snyder, former Governor of Michigan and CEO of SensCy; and Cynthia Wilbanks, senior advisor with the Peterson Rudgers Group and former ​​University of Michigan vice president for government relations.

Panelists will share their personal stories with SPARK, discussing the organization’s impact on the region, the invaluable lessons they’ve learned during their tenure, and providing wisdom and insights for the future leaders of SPARK.

The program also will include a presentation from SPARK Board Chair and DTE CFO David Ruud detailing Ann Arbor SPARK’s successes in 2023, focusing on entrepreneurial endeavors, capital investments, marketing achievements, and business development milestones.

The Annual Meeting will also celebrate the community’s achievements with nine awards recognizing outstanding contributions to the regional economy.

For more information, visit here.

Friends for Animals of Metro Detroit Planning Inaugural Pawchella Festival

Friends for Animals announces its first three-day animal festival June 21-23 at the organization’s MaryAnn Wright Animal Adoption and Education Center (16121 Reckinger Road) in Dearborn.

Evolving from the former Mutt Strut, this weekend-long fundraiser promises to be even bigger, and more engaging than the past event.

In celebration of the sixth anniversary of the MaryAnn Wright Animal Adoption and Education Center, Pawchella will begin June 21 with a concert featuring opening act Trey Taylor, a Nashville-based singer, composer, public speaker, philanthropist, multi-instrumentalist, and long-time supporter of Friends for Animals.

Eighteen-year-old independent songwriter Darcy Moran takes the stage after Taylor, followed by Lester, fronted by Celeste Jones, part of the Friends for Animals medical team. Rounding out the night’s lineup is headliner Danny VanZandt.

June 22 will commence by celebrating the completion of the second phase of development of the new facility with a news conference and ribbon-cutting ceremony at 9 a.m., ushered by a dog pack walk, announcing the start of a street fair. Friends for Animals plans to double the exhibitors of last year’s Mutt Strut, with more activities, contests, and attendees. Plan for raffles and other prizes, a cornhole tournament, a lure course, food trucks, a bar, and more entertainment, wrapping up at 3 p.m.

Friends for Animals will host an adopt-a-thon June 23, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., to conclude the weekend festivities. Rescues, foster-based rescues, shelters, and other animal welfare organizations will come together to promote the mission behind the programming: Successfully uniting homeless pets with their new homes.

For more information, to speak with someone about sponsorship opportunities, or to be an  exhibitor, contact Nova Zorok, events and communications manager, at nzorok@MetroDetroitAnimals.org or 313.943.2697 ext. 1019.

Registration Now Open for June 8 Walk For Miracles at Detroit Zoo

Corewell Health Children’s Walk for Miracles presented by Co-op Solutions will take place starting at 8 a.m. on June 8 at the Detroit Zoo in Royal Oak. It’s a discounted day for families to enjoy a day at the zoo, all while helping local children and families.

The walk begins at 8 a.m., and walkers may stay and enjoy the zoo all day.  All proceeds benefit Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals programming at Corewell Health Children’s and stay in southeast Michigan to fund programs and services, vital pediatric equipment, and scholarships for families struggling to afford care.

Participants are encouraged to dress as their favorite superhero or fantasy character. Children will meet many other popular fairytale and comic book heroes along the way. In addition to enjoying the zoo exhibits, families will enjoy snacks and refreshments and each child will receive a superhero cape and medal. Also, parking is complimentary for registered participants.

Walkers must register online for the event and make a minimum donation of $12 per person for participants 13 years and older, $8 per person ages 2-12, and children under the age of 2 are free. Guests also are provided online personalized/team fundraising pages to raise additional funds. Fundraising for additional funds is not required but is encouraged to further help provide much needed support for pediatric programs and services.

Monroe County Community College Wins National Marketing Awards

Last month at the National Council for Marketing and Public Relations National Conference in Seattle, Monroe County Community College’s Office of Marketing and Communications won two national Paragon Awards for outstanding achievement in community college marketing communications.

The college took Silver for its “Online MCCC Viewbook” and Bronze for its “A Pathway for Every Dreamer Print Ad.”

NCMPR is the only organization of its kind that exclusively represents marketing and public relations professionals at community and technical colleges, and its Paragon Awards recognize outstanding achievement in design and communication at community and technical colleges.

MCCC’s Online Viewbook can be found here.